As the amount of online content continues to grow, how can marketers improve content visibility and engagement? Producing high-quality content is critical, but its value fades away if nobody gets to see it. This is why strategic content distribution is vital to increasing the value of the content you produce.
Here, we’ll explore how to optimize your distribution strategies to build your online visibility, generate more web traffic, and drive conversions.
Content Distribution: Your Options
You can publish content to as many online platforms as you like, but you won’t always reach the right people at the right time. First, you need to discover the relative value of each publishing channel. This will simplify the distribution process for your content team, increase the likelihood of engagement, and give you the highest return on your content investment.
There are three main distribution categories:
- Owned media, which is your website, content assets, email communications, and to some extent, your social media channels.
- Shared media, which is mainly social media.
- Paid media, which includes search engine and social media advertising.
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Each option has its advantages and disadvantages:
- Owned media takes more effort to attract regular attention, but it will build your credibility and search rankings.
- Shared media can help your brand reach a wider audience, but it requires constant monitoring.
- Paid media lets you target specific audiences, but you’re restricted by your budget.
If you’re in the early stages of content distribution planning, it may help to focus on owned media, as you have more control over its readership. It can also act as a hub for website traffic before you introduce other channels into the mix.
Content Distribution: Understanding Your Goals
Content distribution needs to have specific goals, whether it’s to build brand awareness, generate leads, increase user engagement, or something else. For example, do you want people to visit a product page, or sign up to your email newsletter? Your goals will shape your distribution strategies, so always keep these in mind before sharing anything online.
It also helps to spend some time analyzing your current situation. Where does your content already exist online? How many Facebook and Twitter followers do you have? How many visitors does your blog get? How many email subscribers do you have? Knowing these details means you can prioritize channels to maximize exposure in the initial distribution phase.
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Developing a Content Distribution Plan
You might know which channels to focus on, but at this stage, it’s important to document your distribution plan so that your team has a constant reference point. There are various things you need to consider in forming this document. Here are the main questions you should answer:
- What are the different personas of your target audience?
- Who are you likely to reach on each particular channel?
- Which channels most closely align with your brand voice?
- Which types of content resonate with your audience the most?
- What is the primary marketing goal of each channel?
- Which topics does your content need to cover?
- How often should you post on each channel?
- How much time should you spend monitoring each channel and engaging with users?
- Who on your team is in charge of each activity?
- What owned media should traffic be linked to?
Content Distribution: Promotion and Analysis
To maximize the impact and reach of your content, you need some solid promotional strategies to work alongside distribution. These include search engine optimization, paid search advertising, social media advertising, email marketing, influencer marketing, and content repurposing.
Analyzing the results of your content marketing is also key to long-term success. In other words, you need to find out which strategies are working and which should be abandoned. Every organization is different, but you should continuously monitor your strategies and tweak them according to your own data analytics.
Finding the “Sweet Spot”
Content distribution is one of the most important aspects of content marketing, but many marketers fail to give it the attention it deserves. Producing high-quality content still matters, but the content marketing “sweet spot” is where quality content and carefully planned distribution combine.
Unless you take content distribution seriously, you’re in danger of wasting time and money, and never really making meaningful connections with your target market. Make smart choices, and you’ll improve the performance of every piece of content you create.
Want to explore your options in more detail? Here are some content distribution strategies to include in your distribution plan.
Your target audience is online at different times, so sharing your content multiple times increases the chances of it being seen. However, sharing the same content can be seen spam.
To avoid this, create different snippets of the same content, using various images and altered headlines. Using quotations and statistics from a post will also add credibility and drive traffic.
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2. Mention Your Sources When Sharing Content
If you reference influencers in a blog post, remember to @mention them when you promote your content on social media. The chances are your source will see the content and re-share it.
Mentioning other influencers in your industry is a great way to benefit from someone else’s social reach. It will also help you build relationships with other bloggers, giving you more clout when you pitch a guest post for their blog.
Search for blogs that feature “Roundup” posts, and pitch your content to them for inclusion next time round. These blogs often produce lists of the best industry content over the last week, month, or year. To find these blogs, Google: inurl:roundup + “industry keyword” or “link roundup” + “industry keyword.”
Hashtags are a great tool for targeting the right people and categorizing your social content. When used properly, you’re more likely to feature in relevant industry timelines and expose your brand to new people.
This tweet from marketing automation specialists Kuno Creative shows a good balance of readability and Twitter search optimization. By only featuring two hashtags, the tweet is still easy to read.
5. Pin a Post to Your Twitter Profile
This is a simple way to boost content visibility. By default, Twitter pins are always shown at the top of your profile page. In this example, marketing expert Michael Brenner has pinned a blog article to the top of his Twitter profile.
Your pinned posts are likely to get more traffic than other tweets, so only pin high-quality, evergreen content. Use Twitter Analytics to monitor which pinned tweets get the most engagement.
6. Integrate Sharing Opportunities
By making content sharing easier for readers, you give your content the best chance of reaching more people. To maximize shares:
- Use social share buttons on your website.
- Post your social media videos to your website.
- Embed Instagram photos into blog posts to capture new followers.
- Install social widgets such as the Facebook Like Box to build credibility.
7. Build Your Email List
Email marketing may not provide instant results like social media, but it’s still one of the most effective marketing channels. Emails allow you to send content directly to people who already have a relationship with your brand.
8. Use Online Communities
Whatever your niche, there will be an online community willing to engage with your content. Here are some communities to target:
- Facebook groups
- LinkedIn groups
- Google Plus communities
Take part in these groups for a few days before posting any content. Answer questions and promote other content. Then when appropriate, submit helpful resources to drive more traffic to your content.
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9. Use Internal Resources
Most content marketers are already sitting on a ton of valuable internal resources. Your employees, for example, already have some social media reach. Send every employee links to fresh content. It can be as simple as sending a direct tweet for them to share with their social network.
Internal linking between blog posts on your site is another simple way to keep visitors on your site for longer and send traffic to older posts.
10. Repurpose Your Best Content
Repurposing existing content helps you reach a wider audience across different social channels. Some people prefer video content, or will only share visual content.
Transform static content into something more dynamic. Turn a blog post into an infographic, or a how-to article into a video. The options are endless.
Creating original, high-quality content is excellent, but it’s distribution and promotion strategies that will take your content marketing to a whole new level.
Try some of these strategies to increase your blog readership, boost website traffic, and increase social media shares. Your content is more likely to be seen by your target audience before your competitors have even noticed.
Once you start effectively utilizing multiple channels, it’s worthwhile to start thinking about the importance of marketing attribution.
Do you need high-quality content to support your content marketing? Constant Content connects you with thousands of professional writers able to create articles, ebooks, product descriptions, and other assets to tell your brand story, drive SEO and win sales.